Use Website Search to Improve Visitor Experience and Get More Intelligence
Website visitors come in all sizes and shapes, literally. They have different preferences, perceptions, uncertainties, expectations and your website needs to understand them and cater accordingly. One behavior of buying customers that is manifested across different industry types is the research oriented outlook which many of them adopt, looking for as much information as possible before buying form you or contacting you.
You might be following the best usability practices on your website offering information at the click of a button. The navigation of your site may be highly intuitive and your support team seems to be always ready to help. Though, this may not be enough in today’s competitive scenario.
Websites are becoming more and more complex. With loads of information, there is only so much that you can do to cater to your web audience’s requirements. Users look at many things like your product literature, installation directions, about us page, technical specifications and other content to come up with a decision for or against your product/service. Installing a site search feature will not only go a long way in helping your visitors find the content but will also help you in understanding your visitors in a much better way through web analytics tools like Google Analytics.
Site Search – How it helps
- For a typical website, it is not uncommon to receive around 40 to 60% of all its traffic from search engines. Users love to search and find and they would behave no differently on a content heavy website. Proving a search box would satisfy the searcher in your visitor.
- “I want it right here, right now” – There are many of those types of visitors and they would not wait for a second if they can’t find what they are looking for, and alternative solution providers are just a click away. For these fast moving browsers, search box provides a means to find appropriate information in a fast and efficient manner.
- It gives more control to the visitors and thus becomes more visitor centric rather than company/organization centric. It is like moving the ball in their court and letting them be proactive with spelling their needs.
- Getting data – Tying up your website search with a tool like Google Analytics forms a dream team. You can get a lot of information and idea about your customers’ desires, intent and behavior on your website by analyzing the keywords that they put in the search box. While focus groups, online surveys just put light on a part of the whole thing, site search data helps you to connect the dots. While analyzing site search data, it is essential to understand the visitor needs, aspirations through the typed keywords.
- Site search as a feedback tool – If website visitors keep looking for some information, it is a good time to consider moving it up in the hierarchy or to use labels that clearly explain to the user that this is what she is looking for. Semantics of the site can be an important factor and site search data can help you speak the language of your audiences.
- New products and service ideas – If you are selling a chocolate ice cream and user try hard to find almond fudge; this may be an indicator of the market demand. It is also an indicator of the fact that those wanting almond fudge are landing on your site already so if you carry that product you do not need to build an audience for that product, it already exists and the rest can be taken care of by the page on almond fudge.
- Boosting your search marketing campaigns – This is like hearing from the horse’s mouth. Keywords which are already used a lot by your visitors may the keywords to include in your search engine marketing campaigns. You can tweak your existing pages or create content focused around these keywords to target them in a better fashion.
In summary, to compete successfully in a rigorous online environment, you need to understand your audiences better. This understanding can be further improved using a site search tool which will additionally help you in inflating your keyword lists, in getting new product ideas and in designing your website in a better fashion that suits your audiences.